I faced off against a Scrabble-playing robot and lost miserably

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I thought hanging out with a Scrabble-playing robot would be a nice, chill time. I even imagined they would be useful at nursing homes, as therapy companions to elderly residents. I was extremely wrong.

Scrabble bot’s official name is actually the Intelligent Vision System for Companion Robots, made by Taiwanese research company ITRI (Industrial Technology Research Institute). It uses a combination of AI, 3D vision, and hand-eye coordination to pour its opponent a cup of coffee, and then mercilessly crush them at Scrabble.

The AI determines which combination of letter tiles can create the highest scoring word, and tallies up the opponents score accurately as well. But it’s not really all that fun playing against a robot that’s...

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